Saturday, April 14, 2012

The Magic of Friday Night


Periodically, Friday night has the central nervous system of a magic eight ball. Is this a bad thing? Au contraire, my fairy. I'm all for a night in a parallel universe.

First, Tom and I manage to get to Brooklyn, the borough of no return. As we alight from the L, I say, "Think we'll ever get back?" Tom should have replied, "Outlook not so good." Or, "Sure. I've sent in my three easy payments of HA HA HA." In hindsight, it was definitely a sign when I collided with two bunny plushies chasing each other around the turnstiles like squirrels in mating season.

We make it to Mercedeh's "sentience" photography exhibit at the Greenpoint Gallery. She has the entire second floor dedicated to portraits of intriguing humans plucked from crowded, sweaty streets. We also see large amounts of blue foam spray-mounted to available surfaces and zebra stripes. We see a very short girl playing a very large guitar very near a cauldron of fire dangling on a chain. We meet Alex in the stairwell and chat up a couple Iranians. We look at the time and realize we're two shakes from late for a late dinner.

Alex joins us for the trip back to Manhattan, which almost immediately takes a turn for the worse; and I'm not even counting how we missed our stop on the southbound G and had to do a platform U-ey at Flushing Avenue.

After letting the suspense build for long enough that all the hipsters and non-hipsters in their Friday Night gear have had the time to flock in droves, L-trains suspend themselves until further notice. Along with every other flummoxed transit rider in every station in Brooklyn, we surface and try to hail a cab. But there's a problem with trying to hail a cab when a hundred thousand other people are trying to hail a cab-- your odds plummet. We set off on foot for the Brooklyn Bridge.

Our trek is interrupted when, in a crescendo of wild hope, the Chariots of Fire theme drowns out all the street noise in Brooklyn and Alex takes off like a shot. He sprints gold medalist-style chasing the singular unoccupied taxi in a ten mile radius.

One traffic jam later, we find ourselves dropped off in the middle of an #occupy drumming circle in Union Square. We barely notice. It's now midnight and our brains are stuck like magnets on a solo thought: dinner.  Stephan and Benjamin having been putting away saki and kimchee pancakes in Koreatown for three hours. We head to 33rd Street.

In front of us, a skinny Korean girl in black bedazzled stiletto man-eaters climbs the stairs into the restaurant. In her shoes, she's 6 feet tall and higher than aces. She sits at the table next to ours. Ten minutes later our girl keels over, flinging her entire head in a bowl of ramen. A swarm of drunk, short metrosexuals try to carry her down the stairs. I wonder how she will explain the bannister bruises on her forehead at work on Monday.

Stephan begins and ends a commentary on the restaurant's microscopic portions right before our waiter drops off a gigantic salad and a massive kimchee pancake. They stare up at us from our black table like giant anime eyeballs. Daniel talks at length about tadpoles growing legs and Benjamin shows off his track jacket featuring a stylized drawing of an athletically chiseled soybean.

On the way out, we pause while Stephan debates the severity of his craving for Pink Berry. There's the damp smack of a face bouncing on concrete. Take two. It's another fallen size 0 Asian girl, this one yardsaling her way out of Red Mango two doors down with a big cup of fro-yo. Strawberry vanilla twirl spatters nearby legs like frothy ectoplasm.



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